11/2 – Salad Days

Welcome to this thing. I’m going to be writing short or long form responses to my new latest and greatest devotional book that I’m working through with a fellow educator. A significant piece of my life is spent teaching nine to ten months out the calendar year – so much of what I look at, read, think, deal with, or otherwise work through somehow connects to my students and my classroom.

And yes, I’m very aware of separation of Church and State. I’m not going to be preaching up a storm in my classroom or dropping theological connective tissue into our literature discussions. As I work through this devotional book, I’ll be digging into the implications of the message for me as an educator, teacher, mentor, encourager, and supporter of my students. I’ll be sharing those thoughts here. And since I’m a writer – this seemed like the best choice for an outlet.

The play of Shakespeare today focuses on is Antony and Cleopatra and Act I, Scene v, line 76. It is comparing it to Psalm 25:7. The message here is that our pasts do not determine our future. As the devotional book puts it even better,

” Your (bad days/choices) do not dictate who you are today. However many or dark the sins of your youth, they are not you. Your past is not your path.”

The Bard and the bible – November 2

What an incredible message. What an important thing to remember for our students. Whatever they’ve done, whatever they were – it is not their future and it is not decided. They are not bad kids or good kids. They’re kids with choices and that forgiveness and mercy should overflow in abundance in response to the less then stellar choices they make. It is through that mercy and goodness that hope can find purchase to light up the darkness, to be beacon, and to let a kid know we don’t judge them on the past. It’s not in the job description.

The question at the end was, “How does God’s mercy and goodness give you hope?” To that end – I think it is the model that He gives us that gives me hope. That in my mess ups, screw ups, and pratfalls – that He still loves me, hopes for me, fights for me, and is with me – no matter what. That He believes in me and my worth. And that we can take much of that from Christ and translate, adapt, and model it for our students as well.

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